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Skylights earn a big split at Tech

 

Last updated 2/22/2021 at 8:06am

Courtesy Photo

Montana State University-Northern's L'Tia Lawrence, right, drives by a Montana Tech defender during Sunday's Frontier Conference game in Butte. Northern split with the Orediggers this weekend, which gave the Skylights fourth place and a first-round playoff game at home.

With all they’ve been through this season, the Montana State University-Northern Skylights were still in a position to secure a Frontier Conference playoff game at home on the last weekend of the regular season. All they had to do was win at Montana Tech — no easy feat.

But Saturday night, that’s exactly what the Skylights did, as they beat the Orediggers 64-57 in Butte. Northern broke a 16-16 first-quarter tie with 23 points in the second stanza, then they opened up a 51-39 lead after three periods, before holding Tech off in the fourth quarter for the huge win.

“Very proud of our kids tonight,” MSU-N head coach Chris Mouat said. “It’s huge. Tonight was very much like a playoff game, with a lot on the line for both teams. And Tech is very explosive, so we knew we had to be ready to be good for a full 40 minutes. And while it wasn’t quite 40, we were really good on both ends of the floor for a large chunk of the game tonight.

In the important victory, senior Peyton Kehr poured in 21 points, while Tiara Gilham added 11 and Sydney Hovde tallied 11 boards to go with seven points. The Skylights were without senior PG McKenzie Gunter, as well, so youngsters Morgan Mason and L’Tia Lawrence stepped up big.

“Very proud of those two,” Mouat said of Mason and Lawrence. “They were ready to go tonight. They did a great job. Overall, our whole team was great tonight. It was a huge win for us. Our kids wanted this one, and they did what they had to do to get it done, and I’m just really proud of them.”

With a home playoff game secure, Northern was able to rest some players in Sunday’s rematch, which Tech won 62-55. The Skylights fell behind 16-7 early, but did rally in the second half. Gilham led Northern with 15 points, while Hovde added eight points and 13 boards. Mesa Williams scored a game-high 20 points for the Orediggers, who will now turn around and make the trip to Havre for the playoffs.

The Skylights, who finished 5-10 in the Frontier, will host the 5-12 Orediggers in a first-round playoff game Thursday at 5 p.m. in the Armory Gymnasium.

Skylights 64, Montana Tech 57

MSU-Northern 16 23 12 13 - 64

Montana Tech 16 12 11 18 - 57

MSU-N - Peyton Kehr 8-12 3-5 21, Tiara Gilham 5-18 2-3 14, Sydney Hovde 1-5 5-8 7, Allix Goldhahn 1-4 0-0 3, Morgan Mason 0-1 0-2 0, Ryley Kehr 2-3 0-0 4, Cameron Mooney 3-4 1-2 7, Dulci Skunkcap 0-0 0-0 0, L'Tia Lawrence 3-5 0-0 8. Totals 23-52 11-20 64.

MT - Mollie Peoples 0-4 0-0 0, Madison Allen 3-6 0-0 7, Jaden Comings 2-6 1-2 5, Dani Urick 4-16 2-2 12, Mesa Williams 8-13 0-1 18, Aubrie Rademacher 2-3 4-4 8, Soda Rice 1-3 3-4 5, Brooke Heggie 1-7 0-0 2. Totals 21-58 10-13 57.

3-pt FG:Montana State-Northern 7-16 (Kehr 2-3, Gilham 2-7, Goldhahn 1-3, Mason 0-1, Lawrence 2-2), Montana Tech 5-19 (Peoples 0-2, Allen 1-3, Comings 0-1, Urick 2-8, Williams 2-4, Rice 0-1). Rebounds: Montana State-Northern 43 (Hovde 11), Montana Tech 28 (TEAM 6). Fouls Montana State-Northern 17, Montana Tech 16. Fouled out: none.

Montana Tech 62, Skylights 55

MSU-Northern 7 20 8 20 – 55

Montana Tech 16 18 12 16 – 62

MSU-N - Peyton Kehr 3-9 2-2 9, Tiara Gilham 7-17 1-2 15, Sydney Hovde 2-2 4-4 8, Allix Goldhahn 3-8 0-2 7, Morgan Mason 0-2 0-0 0, Ryley Kehr 2-5 1-1 5, Cameron Mooney 1-1 1-2 3, Dulci Skunkcap 0-0 0-0 0, L'Tia Lawrence 3-12 1-2 8. Totals 21-56 10-15 55.

MT - Mollie Peoples 2-8 0-0 6, Madison Allen 4-6 0-2 11, McKayla Kloker 0-0 0-0 0, Jaden Comings 1-1 0-0 2, Dani Urick 3-8 1-2 8, Mesa Williams 7-16 6-9 20, Aubrie Rademacher 4-4 0-2 10, Soda Rice 1-4 1-1 3, Brooke Heggie 1-5 0-0 2. Totals 23-52 8-16 62.

3-pt FG:Montana State-Northern 3-17 (Kehr 1-3, Gilham 0-2, Goldhahn 1-5, Mason 0-1, Kehr 0-1, Lawrence 1-5), Montana Tech 8-17 (Peoples 2-5, Allen 3-3, Urick 1-3, Williams 0-4, Rademacher 2-2). Rebounds: Montana State-Northern 41 (Hovde 13), Montana Tech 30 (Heggie 7). Fouls Montana State-Northern 15, Montana Tech 17. Fouled out: Goldhahn.

 
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